The meeting also discussed the progress of the CTBS, in Santos, whose project is ready, but was moving slowly due to the crisis

Last July 3, Professor Júlio Meneghini, Scientific Director of the FAPESP-Shell Research Centre for Gas Innovation (RCGI), took part in a meeting at the Palácio dos Bandeirantes – State Capitol and official Governor’s residence – with Governor Geraldo Alckmin. Also present were the Director of the National Petroleum, Natural Gas, and Biofuels Agency (ANP), Decio Oddone; the Rector of the University of São Paulo (USP), Marco Antônio Zago; representatives of UNESP and UNICAMP; the President of FAPESP, José Goldemberg; the President of the Institute for Technological Research (IPT), Fernando José Gomes Landgraf; the State Secretary of Energy and Mining, João Carlos de Souza Meirelles; and the State Undersecretary of Petroleum and Natural Gas, Dirceu Abrahão; and other representatives of Information and Communication Technology groups (ICT) of the State of São Paulo.

“During the meeting, emphasis was given to the role of State universities, the IPT, and FAPESP in dealing with the technological challenges that this condition of being a large producer imposes on the State of São Paulo,” Meneghini summarized. ANP projections point out São Paulo as the second largest producer of petroleum in the nation for the next ten years. According to the agency, the next rounds of public bidding for exploration fields and the production of petroleum and natural gas – which are planned for 2017, 2018, and 2019 – have the potential for attracting to the State US$ 40 billion in investments.

“The RCGI, which is the largest research center for engineering and innovation in Brazil, sponsored by FAPESP and by SHELL, is fulfilling its role in helping to overcome these scientific challenges regarding the production of natural gas. We are studying ways of producing natural gas in the Pre-salt fields and of purifying it, by separating the methane from carbon dioxide, in order to be able to monetize the use of this enormous wealth we have,” said Meneghini.

The meeting’s agenda also included the project of the Baixada Santista Technology Center (CTBS), in the city of Santos. The project, which moved very slowly, due to the crisis, is now being resumed. According to Professor Kazuo Nishimoto, of USP’s Polytechnic School, who is one of those responsible for implementing the CTBS, in conjunction with representatives of UNESP, UNICAMP, and CRUESP (Board of Rectors of São Paulo State Universities), the proposal is that the Center be a place for developing technologies and processes for the exploration and production of petroleum and natural gas, in order to meet pressing challenges, such as how to reduce production and operating costs, and to increase the level of safety of the operations.

“We are talking about integrated operations that include remote monitoring, since the production fields are about 300 kilometers from the coast and at a depth of approximately 2,500 meters,” he explains. Nishimoto says that the CTBS will likely also involve the seven private universities on the coast in Santos.

“CTBS is a commitment that Petrobras took up with the State of São Paulo and the city government of Santos. An execution project has already been prepared and delivered to the company at the end of last year,” he says. The City of Santos granted the land, on the corner of Braz Cubas and Henrique Porchat streets, in the Vila Nova district. The CTBS legal entity has already been created and the land is in its name.” The Department of Energy and Mining of the State of São Paulo, via Secretary João Carlos Meirelles and Undersecretary for Petroleum and Natural Gas, Dirceu Abrahão, have been actively involved so that the implementation of the CTBS actually occurs.